The seized tobacco product.
Sohaila Ahmed, Staff Reporter
Ajman Department of Economic Development (Ajman DED) and the Municipality and Planning Division in Ajman (MPDA) closed an illegal warehouse in the Second Industrial Area of Al Jarf, for manufacturing and packaging tobacco and Mu’assel (flavored shisha tobacco) products.
The adulterated goods were confiscated, which amounted to nearly 16 thousand products, varying between Mu’assel, raw Mu’assel, electronic shisha (hookah), and flavoured oils for electronic shisha and tobacco.
The market value of such products was estimated at about Dhs1.5 million.
“Based on information received from the Federal Customs Authority (FCA), a team of inspectors from both parties seized an unlicenced warehouse belonging to one of the tobacco stores in the Emirate.
"Such warehouse manufactures and packages tobacco products using international trademarks. The warehouse was immediately seized and closed, and the goods were confiscated,” said Ahmed Khair Al Balushi, Director of the Control and Consumer Protection Division at the Department of Economic Development.
Official displays the seized goods.
He also added, “We call on the public and consumers to protect their rights by avoiding the purchase of goods and products from unlicensed or suspicious facilities, examining the commodity or product before purchasing them, ensuring that they conform to the specifications approved and applicable in the UAE, and cooperating in reporting any facility or warehouse that operates in violation of the law or trades in counterfeit or adulterated goods or products, by calling the Ajman Contact Center.
"This is because such goods and products are detrimental to the health and safety of society, the environment and the local economy. We affirm that we continue working with partners to protect trademarks and punish whoever intends to endanger the safety and health of society.”
“Given our concern for the health and safety of society members and within the framework of our control programs to ensure the safety of consumer products traded, we confiscated expired tobacco and Mu’assel products that do not conform to the approved UAE specifications and standards; do not bear a tax stamp; lack storage standards, and health controls and requirements; and contain anonymous chemicals.
"Moreover, expired, unfit for distribution and high risk materials are re-packaged with new dates in such warehouse, and we destroyed all the seized products. We emphasize that we continue monitoring and inspecting on all relevant institutions in the Emirate to monitor health violations that endanger the society,” Al Balushi said.
“Protecting society and maintaining the health of citizens against harmful business practices are one of the strategic objectives of the Authority and the customs sector in the UAE,” he indicated.
“The work team from the customs inspectors at the Authority received information that such warehouse manufactured adulterated tobacco and Mu’assel products, and evaded taxes. Therefore, the competent authorities were immediately informed, which in turn closed the warehouse and seized the adulterated goods”, said by Mutab Al Bannai, Director of the Customs Control and Inspection Division at the Federal Customs Authority.
He also added, “We take pride in our strategic partnership with the Department of Economic Development, the Municipality and Planning Department, Department of Ports and Customs, and the Federal Tax Authority, and we seek to strengthen such partnership by exchanging information and experiences to protect consumers, support the economic development, raise the UAE competitiveness in the field of trade, and build a competitive knowledge-based economy.”
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